Turkey extends state of emergency for three more months

Turkey extends state of emergency for three more months
People's Democratic Party (HDP) politicians hold 'No' banners in a parliamentary meeting prior to the referendum in Turkey.
By bne IntelliNews April 18, 2017

The state of emergency in Turkey imposed in the wake of last year’s failed coup attempt will be extended by three months, Deputy PM Numan Kurtulmus said on April 18 following a cabinet meeting.

The National Security Council, chaired by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, advised extending the emergency rule, the third such extension made since the botched putsch. Ministers accepted its advice, according to Kurtulmus.

The decision came two days after Erdogan and his ruling AKP's narrow win in the referendum that opens the way to an executive-style presidency.

Main opposition party CHP has claimed that irregularities in the conduct of the referendum mean the result of the popular vote is not reliable. Its deputy chairman has called for the annulment of the results.

Protesters in Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir, where the Yes camp lost, took to the streets against the results of the referendum. The protests did not draw large numbers of people and were seen in only a few districts of these cities.

At this point, the Supreme Election Board is unlikely to rule for a recount of the votes.

The Organisation for Security and Co-Operation in Europe (OSCE) has argued in a report that the constitutional referendum was fought on an uneven playing field.

However, Ankara has rejected the criticisms made by the OSCE.

“We don’t acknowledge this politically motivated report. They [international observers] should know their place” Erdogan said.

Turkey’s foreign ministry also slammed the report. “The Preliminary Findings and Conclusions Report of the Observation Mission is a reflection of this biased and prejudiced approach,” the ministry said in a statement on its website.

“In fact, the political statements made by the Director of the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights regarding the referendum process shortly before holding the referendum has shown that the mission has arrived in Turkey with prejudices and has disregarded the principles of objectivity and impartiality,” the statement added.